A Note from Cat Bordhi

By Ann Shayne
September 16, 2020

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77 Comments
  • What a beautiful and generous letter. Thank you for sharing it with the rest of us. I didn’t think we’d get to hear from Cat again.

  • It’s easy to understand, Ann, why you cried-I cried as I read Cat’s email. I have known of her news.
    Lucky me-I was able to take classes with her many years ago at the most excellent Clara Parked led Knitter’s Review Retreats & I’ve remembered Cat with great fondness. What a unique spirit she is.

  • Her words and your response are so moving. In this moment, embracing our youth with love and the tools they need to forge a path, in spite of all of the obstacles, is perhaps only tied with the need to vote in its importance. Thank goodness we are the lucky ones who have found fiber, Bordhi, and you!

  • Thanks for sharing the letter. As a teacher who is starting her remote learning class today it was perfect timing. My morning message will remind kids to ask questions because I, too, want to be a teacher that makes sense.

    • Thank you for the möbius….I never make or wear one that your knotting kindness and wisdom does not come to mind. I send you comfort and peace as you move through these coming days. Thank you so very much. Mj O’Malley

  • Thank you for such a lovely, heartfelt, gracious letter. It was bittersweet to read yet uplifting! Thank you Cat

  • Thank you so much for sharing this Ann. I had known about Cat’s news and have so appreciated her acceptance and courage facing this last life journey. Thank you.

  • Your letter/ snippets/ posts are the first and sometimes only thing I read upon waking, before the day takes over.
    Joy, hope laughter, wonderment.
    And today tears. Cat Bordhi’s letter.
    It’s unbelievable that I’ve been knitting for over 10 years and never heard of her before..
    I’ve a lot to catch up.
    Thank you

  • Cat Bordhi has always been a beacon for me and through her books and teachings, she will always be. Thank you so for sharing her letter with all of us…

    • Thank you Ann for sharing Cat’s message.
      I was one who had the opportunity to learn Moebius knitting technique from her at a class in Indianapolis. Hooked on Moebius baskets that year, I made them in many colors and gifted grandchildren with pumpkin baskets for Halloween treats. Cat opened my mind to more creative ways to use knitting.

  • Thank you for sharing her letter. I hope that if I have advanced warning of my body leaving this place, I can be as gracious as Cat. Leaving in Gratitude, not Fear and Regret may be life’s greatest gift, but it’s a gift we have to give ourselves.

    • What a lovely way to put it, Pamela, “Leaving in Gratitude, not Fear and Regret…..a gift we have to give ourselves.” Cat Bordhi is a role model and an extraordinary teacher.

    • Well said, Pamela. Such grace & inspiration. May we all face our lives and deaths with such equanimity, spunk, gratitude and peace. Thank you so much for sharing. A meditation for this morning.

      Much peace to Cat on her journey.

  • Thank you Cat and Ann, the email brought tears to my eyes too. I also treasure the course I took from Cat at the first Knit East in St. Andrews NB. I am inspired to try again to step outside my comfort zone and approach my knitting with the creativity that Cat lives and encourages in others. I hope you can feel all the love we send to you Cat.

  • What a generous, giving and kind gift to us all. Wishing Cat peace on her journey.

  • Cat is going Home with all the grace she has had on this side . Her teaching helped guide me into the knitting world and that has saved my life.

  • Thank you for sharing. Cat Bordhi has ever been my inspiration as knitter and teacher. May Home be filled with Love and yarn.☮️

  • Thank you for sharing this with us. What a gift she leaves us with.

  • Thank you for sharing Cat’s thoughts with all of us. Those of us that have been lucky enough to have taken classes with her, will continue to smile when we cast on with variegated yarn and hear her encouraging words as we begin to navigate her wonderful patterns.

  • And for anyone looking for some Mobius options, Cat has just released her last pattern collection. They are called “MoMo” and a wonderful twist (no pun intended) on her Mobius designs. I can highly recommend this and I’m currently having fun knitting my first, of many, MoMo.
    https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/cats-momo-cowls

    • Quick as a cat, MoMo leapt at me – MoMo my grands’ nickname for me! Yesterday afternoon was full immersion in Cat’s beautiful blog – these patterns seem channeled from the chullos of Peru. Thank you, OneDay, for this reference. And thank you, Cat, for sharing your creative world with so many.

  • could not download the pattern, although I did leave her a message…please help!

    • DM me on Ravelry (twinsetjan) and I’ll help you out.

  • It is a privilege to be part of this amazing circle of people.

  • There is a KAL going in the Cat Bordhi Fans group on Ravelry. Questions about the pattern, loving words about Cat and her legacy, and a bounty of beautiful cowls. If you are knitting the cowl, please use #RioCalinaKAL, #RioCalinaKAL4Cat, and, especially, #4CatBordhi as tags in any social media posts. Cat is following the projects on the Ravelry project page and these tags on Instagram when she has time.

  • I saw Cat’s post on IG – beautiful. She has put an e-book on Ravelry with 12 MoMo Cowl patterns as well.
    Thank you for sharing this…

  • How poignant that as I’m reading this letter I am listening to Judy Collins sing Amazing Grace. Sigh.

  • What a blessing she was … my heart breaks

  • Wow. I appreciate you sharing this. She has been in my thoughts for awhile, now. How generous she is to share this gift and her gift of gratitude and peace.

  • Generous to the last. What a lovely person and we will all feel the loss of her.

  • Thank you for sharing Cat’s words…..years ago I was attempting my first pair of socks (I had been told ANYONE can knit socks). I had started with a longer set of double-points; frustrated, turned to the shorter set; more frustrated, quit! And then the shop got “Socks Soar”….70+ pairs later, I (and the recipients of many pairs) owe Cat much thanks. God speed, Cat.

  • Thank you for sharing her beautiful message. Cat has always been a knitting treasure and I’m so grateful that I got to learn from her.

  • Many thanks for your post. I was lucky enough to take a class with her many years ago-such an exuberant teacher and giving person. She’ll be missed

  • Thanks for sharing. I’ve been following her news a bit, but this is really moving. Would that we all had the grace to welcome the big transition like this.

  • Thank you for sharing this. I was lucky enough to attend Cats classes at Knitters review Retreat. What a truly gifted teacher. With grace and good humor, she guided countless knitters to new ideas and skills. I always think of Cat when I used Judy Becker’s cast on. After 50 years of knitting, this method had always stymied me. Until Cat showed me the way.

  • I am very sad to learn that Cat is on her way “home”. She is so marvelous. I love her style in teaching and in life. She’s teaching us again, now.

  • Beautiful and inspirational start to the day.
    Can someone please pass the tissues?

  • What a beautiful, giving spirit. Cat’s joy at going Home has comforted me in my grief for losing my beloved mother this week. Godspeed, Cat. I know there will be many new möbius soon in heaven. ❤️

  • Thank you for posting, although it makes me sad. I had the pleasure of attending one of Cat’s retreats 2 1/2 years ago with a couple of friends. Her generosity of spirit was inspiring. The setting was divine. I feel fortunate to have been able to have this experience with my friends. Wishing a peaceful and loving passage for Cat and her family

  • Sobbing

  • I’m stunned by the letter. It saddens me so much to know that somebody that I have felt true teacher, a true leader, inspiration to all of us will be leaving us. Thank you Cat for all of the fantastic work you’ve done, for giving us all hope! Such a beautiful heart and graceful lady. She’s brought joy to our lives.

  • Such love and grace. Thank you for sharing Cat’s letter, Ann. I’ll be picking up my Rio Calina Cowl knitting again, later today.

  • I’m wondering what a good worsted yarn is to use for this cowl? I’m interested in buying for donations to her suggested resource center here in Friday a Harbor.

  • This message touched me deeply. It has me rethink the simple acts in my life, like clearing away clutter, paying bills, and cleaning the fishbowl. I will be hold these things as Sacred acts in my life.

  • What a beautiful soul! Peace be with her ❤️

  • Tears and endless thanks for a fantastic spirit! Smooth journey for you and your loved ones.

  • Regretably, upon clicking the link I get a frowning face. Please advise?

  • Just thank you–to Cat, to you. So sad.

  • I read this during a break at work….big mistake…..I am crying. I hope when it’s my time to go–I have 1/10th of her Grace.

  • No more beautiful spirit, and teacher was ever was created! With a heavy and grateful heart, thank you Cat!

  • My mom, an epic yarnie and an acolyte of knitting socks on two needles, died about 10 months ago, far too young (I’m a Millennial, for context). I bet she would have loved to take a class with Cat Bordhi, and I hope that Cat will continue to teach classes in Valhalla to other Valkyries like my mom.

    • Oh dear, what a tragic loss for you. I hope that your mom connects with Cat in Valhalla. It sounds like an epic knit night!

    • Like you, my mom was never without a knitting project on the needles. We share time together by watching Cat on Vicki Howell’s show, Knitty Gritty. Loved it when she demonstrated how to knit behind her back!

  • Thank you for this lovely letter! Wishing Cat a clear day filled with sunshine & her beloved family & friends. Her videos and books have been such a fun great help over the years and i have shared them with many customers over the past several years.
    May God bless her and keep her ❤️
    ~Sonya

  • Thank you for sharing this here, Ann. I’ve been making a purple moebius cowl for a friend, as part of the emPower project, thinking of Cat all the way. I followed some of the links to past MDK posts that involve Cat, and I was so moved to see her thoughts on how moebius knitting is a metaphor for bringing a divided country together. https://www.moderndailyknitting.com/finding-the-right-words/

    • Thank you, Ann for all you do. Thank you, Cat, for all you do: patterns, teaching and books.

    • Wow. Those statements may be even more relevant today than they were then. I need to start a moebius cowl NOW. Thanks so much for the post, Rosa.

  • Thank you for sharing your story and note from Cat. So much of my early knitting understanding came from Cat and her videos per my LYS ladies referring me to her. I’m sure they wanted to send me out the door in good hands. Our knitting paths never personally crossed, but Cat is very much a part of the knitter I am today.

  • Thank you for sharing this. We are so fortunate to have had her in our lives, however distantly it may be.

  • What a beautiful letter. My heart is heavy but full of love for her strength and courage she is expressing in such a beautiful letter.

  • How strange, to smile at this news even as the tears well up. I was lucky enough to join Cat on one of her floating knitting retreats on the Washington state ferries, years ago. Her gentle, genius teaching helped me find delight in my own curious spirit and mind, and she made me feel like the most special soul on earth. A true teacher. I smile because Cat told us that cancer was one of the best things that ever happened to her – that it woke her right up to every moment, to her work on earth, to life. I think of all the moments she has fully savored since her wake up. And here she is teaching me again – what could it mean to face the next leap forward with such grace, curiosity and open heartedness? Sending her, her family, and our whole community so much love. Let’s all go savor the moment, seize the day, and be brave and bold, in her honor.

  • An amazing spirit!

  • Such generosity. Cat still teaching us the most important lessons.
    I never met Cat as I live on one of the Hebridean Islands of Scotland, but have been a follower for years.
    Lots of love and peace to finish her life pattern.
    Ngadrolma

  • I too selected the most forest-y yarn I could find to make this cowl. & Thanks for this post

  • We have all been so fortunate to have experienced Cat’s exuberant spirit! I’m so grateful for her San Juan Island retreats, for classes, and the books, she has blessed us with.

  • What a wonderful example of grace, compassion, and giving. I would have loved taking classes from her. Her contributions are wonderful, she will be missed, but very welcomed on the other side

  • What devastating news this is, and how inspirational Cat continues to be. I am anxious to knit this cowl, but I am having no luck finding it by clicking on the link, or trying through Ravelry. Can you help?

  • What a beautiful, generous spirit. She made this world a better place!

  • Just last night I cast on for a pair of socks using one of Cat’s books, “Personal Footprints for Insouciant Sock Knitters”. There are just no words for what Cat has brought to the world – not just to knitting. To say she will be missed when the inevitable comes is an understatement.

  • I just saw a Facebook post telling us that Cat Bordhi died today. My heart hurts.

  • Oh my. Fuck cancer. It’s turned my world upside down over the past 3 years-it’s taken my husband and my two dogs.
    Cat, thank you for your joyous knitting and brave honesty. Hugs.

  • I learned so much about making socks from her books. Gone too soon.

  • Already missing her so much. What a way to face the end of life.

  • I will miss her incredible way of looking at design. She was kind, thoughtful and disarming with her knitters and we all loved her back. Her moments of meditation during retreats grounded us and made us take a deep breathe. She will live forever in her writings and designs. Thank you Cat for being yourself.

  • I just sent an email to the NY Times, reminding them that although a lot of people have died recently, Cat was a woman of great inspiration, influence, humor and wit who had influenced thousands through her books and her in person teaching. I took a class from her many years ago when she was teaching socks and I have carried the experience with me for all those years. I wonder if more people sent the Times a mail we could get her appreciated….

  • This was a touching letter which gave me tears. I have heard about Cat Bordhi after I started knitting. This was sometime during 2015, my hands would shake, I’m 57 at the time and caring for my mom full-time. I am still a beginning knitter, though I will not give up.

    I have arthritis and want to try to create also. My first project was a mobius wrap for my sister. I found my knitting mojo working on that wrap and it gave me sanity while I was in an easy chair by mom’s hospital bed. I’m a RN who was with my father during his last nine weeks and with my mom for over five years, I’m so thrilled Cat had family at her side. I’m sure it meant the world to her. Thank you for sharing her words with us all.

  • Very nice letter! Thank you for sharing!